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Hitachi Vantara Expands Converged, Hyper-Converged Infrastructure With New All-Flash Tech, GPU, Software

The new offerings, introduced at the Hitachi Next 2018 conference, are part of a move to bring together Hitachi Vantara’s various technologies to meet changing customer requirements, says John Magee, vice president of portfolio marketing.

Hitachi Vantara, a provider of data center infrastructure, business analytics and IoT technology, Wednesday expanded its data center business with the introduction of new management, automation and hyper-converged infrastructure capabilities.

The new offerings, introduced at the Hitachi Next 2018 conference in San Diego, are part of a move by the vendor to bring together its various technologies to meet changing customer requirements, said John Magee, vice president of portfolio marketing for the company.

Hitachi Vantara is coming up on its one-year anniversary and has over the past year has accelerated its product release schedule, Magee told CRN.

[Related: Hitachi Combines Data Center Infrastructure, IoT, Big Data Capabilities In New Company: Hitachi Vantara]

"At our core, we were formed on storage, converged infrastructure, hyper-converged infrastructure, data center infrastructure and multi-cloud platforms. … We're bringing analytics, machine learning and more to help customers better manage our infrastructure and manage their data," he said.

Hitachi Vantara, Santa Clara, Calif., last year was formed by combining the Hitachi Data Systems storage and data center infrastructure business, its Hitachi Insight Group IoT business, and its Pentaho big data business into a new combined company aimed at delivering new collaborative data offerings for commercial and industrial enterprises.

On the data center infrastructure side, Hitachi Vantara enhanced its Hitachi Unified Compute Platform, or UCP, line of converged and hyper-converged infrastructure offerings with several new technologies.

The company's UCP HC hyper-converged infrastructure appliances now includes a new all-flash model V124N offering with up to eight NVMe SSDs for capacity and up to four 3D XPoint-based Intel Optane SSDs for high-performance cache, Magee said. He said that gives up to 72 TB of all-flash performance and capacity in a 1U appliance.

"This is our first hyper-converged infrastructure offering with all-NVMe storage," he said.

Hitachi Vantara also enhanced its Hitachi Unified Compute Platform Advisor IT management and orchestration software with new automated and rule-based deployment to significantly decrease the need for manual configuration, Magee said.

"UCP Advisor is being integrated with more machine learning and analytics," he said. "We want to advance what users do with new levels of automation and control."

Hitachi Vantara is also supporting its UCP converged infrastructure systems with new Hitachi servers, including the new Hitachi Advanced Server DS225 with Nvidia Tesla GPUs for applications requiring high-performance graphics such as virtual desktop infrastructure, computer-aided design and advanced analytics, Magee said.

The new Hitachi Advanced Server DS225 with Nvidia Tesla GPUs is also available with the Hitachi UCP RS rack-scale system, he said.

Hitachi Vantara also expanded its UCP-based Hitachi Solution for Databases offerings in a number of key areas, Magee said. The Oracle Enterprise Data Warehouse version now offers Hadoop as an offload target as a way to lower cost by minimizing the number of licenses for the database.

Another optimization, Hitachi Solution for SAP HANA Platform, now offers new certified SAP HANA appliances as well, Magee said.

Storage vendors are quickly embracing NVMe all-flash storage for performance, and Hitachi Vantara is right there with the best of them, said Kent Kellough, an 18-year veteran of Advanced Systems Group, a Denver-based solution provider and Hitachi Vantara partner.

The vendor is also an expert in tying its technology to applications that require performance as it is with its new UCP offerings and Nvidia Tesla GPUs, Kellough told CRN.

Advanced graphics performance in rack-scale offerings is key to such applications as virtual desktop infrastructure, he said.

"GPUs in general play well with virtual desktops," he said. "I see tremendous opportunity for artificial intelligence and analytics for NVMe solutions. GPUs are also being used for high-performance video streaming applications as well, such as media and entertainment. And for virtual desktops or offloading workstations, graphics performance is important."

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